Bitcoin miner Marathon's investments in bankrupt Compute North totaled $31.3 million

Quick Take

  • Marathon invested a total of $31.3 million in its hosting provider Compute North, which filed for bankruptcy last month.
  • The company doesn’t expect the ongoing process to affect its growth target or have a significant impact on current operations.

Bitcoin miner Marathon invested a total of $31.3 million in hosting provider Compute North, which recently filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

The investments are broken down between different Compute North corporate entities. Marathon invested $10 million in convertible preferred stock of Compute North Holdings, Inc and $21.3 million related to an unsecured senior promissory note with Compute North LLC. Additionally, Marathon paid Compute North entities a total of $50 million in operating deposits.

Marathon doesn't expect the bankruptcy process to affect its projected growth target of 23 exahashes per second (EH/s) in 2023, according to a statement published Thursday.

"While we expect operations to continue as originally anticipated, our asset light model provides us with the optionality to relocate our miners to other locations, should the need arise," said Fred Thiel, Marathon’s chairman and CEO.

The firm recently started energization at a colocated 280-megawatt wind-powered bitcoin mining facility in West Texas with Compute North. The two companies also closed an additional 42-megawatt hosting deal in July. 

The Compute North entities associated with both the King Mountain wind farm and Wolf Hollow sites in Texas sites are not directly subject to the Chapter 11 process, Marathon said. While there have been "some delays" at Wolf Hollow — which Compute North has attributed to a regulatory matter — the King Mountain site has not been negatively impacted, the company said.

"Compute North has been a supportive partner, and we respect this voluntary step to stabilize their business," Marathon said.


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Scaling operations

Marathon completed its exit from a coal-powered facility in Montana, redeploying some of the machines hosted there and selling others at a total of roughly $47.5 million.

Its monthly bitcoin production went from 73 BTC in July (in big part due to a storm that knocked miners offline) to 184 BTC in Aug. and 360 BTC in Sept..

“During the third quarter, we sequentially improved our bitcoin production as we successfully transitioned out of our facility in Montana and continued scaling operations at new locations, including the King Mountain wind farm in Texas,” said Thiel.

While Marathon had a hash rate of 3.8 EH/s at the end of Sept., that number has quickly jumped to 5.7 EH/s as of Oct. 5 with the energization of 19,000 additional miners. The company expects to add 2.0 EH/s over the next 30 days.

Editor's Note: Updated with additional information about Marathon's September performance.

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Author

Catarina is a reporter for The Block based in New York City. Before joining the team, she covered local news at and at the New York Daily News. She started her career in Lisbon, Portugal, where she worked for publications such as Público and Sábado. She graduated from NYU with a MA in Journalism. Feel free to email any comments or tips to [email protected] or to reach out on Twitter (@catarinalsm).